Wednesday, October 7, 2009

The Wringer

Anyone my age will remember the old wringer washer. What an experience! Had it not been work, it might have been fun. Mom had the old wringer washer in the basement so we could run dirty wash water into the basement drain. Clothes were separated by whites, lights and darks. The washer was filled with water, soap added and the clothes agitated. First the lights were added then passed through the wringer into the rinse tub. The wringer consisted of two rollers on the upper part of the washing machine. Flat clothes came out the other side of the rollers and fell into the big tub (which was sometimes used for bathing) of clean water. Next came the light colors followed by a load or two of darks. One tub of water and detergent = three to four loads of laundry. The wet clothes were then taken in the summer to be hung on the outside clothesline. In the winter they hung in the basement. Monday laundry was an experience.

I loved doing laundry with Mom. My job was running the clothes through the rollers. I got to do it twice. First the washed clothing went into the rinse water, then the rollers were turned over the rinse tub so I could pass the rinsed clothing through them once more dropping flat clothes into the clothes basket. Wow! It was better than any old video game.

I'm smiling at the good 'ol days. I can still smell the soap and wash water. Mom's old detergent container sits atop the back of my stove with old soap still clinging to the bottom. Sometimes I peek inside and once more I'm transported back in time. A wonderful time.

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